He wanted to kiss her—so badly. But he jerked back just in time to avoid temptation, to avoid sliding his mouth over hers. Clearing the desire from his throat, he forced himself to chuckle. “Well, you don’t need to kiss this frog either.”
“You’re a frog?” she asked with skepticism.
“I’m certainly no prince,” he said.
“Married?” That would certainly make him a frog for leaning toward her, for acting like he’d wanted to kiss her.
He shuddered. “God, no!”
She chuckled. “Some of the ones I met were, I suspect,” she said. “Maybe that’s why one of them struck me.”
“Were you going to tell anyone’s wives?”
“I didn’t know their wives, probably didn’t even know their real names. But I’ll pull up the app on my phone and we can take a look.”
Ben shook his head. “Your phone wasn’t recovered from the scene.”
“Then my laptop...” She walked over to a desk in a corner of the studio space. The case sat empty on top of it. “Where is it?”
“That’s what someone was after,” he surmised. “Your phone and laptop. That’s why your keys were taken.” He had changed the locks too late; somebody had already gotten what they were after.
But then why hire the nurse to kill Ellie? There was still something else, something that she knew.
“I can sign on other devices,” she said. “I can retrieve my emails.”
Ben handed her his phone. “Check.”
She arched a brow and teased, “Sure you trust me with this?”
“I have nothing to hide,” he promised. “No wives.”
“Girlfriends?” She pressed her hand over her mouth as if to hold back the question, but it was too late. Her face flushed with embarrassment.
Amused and pleased that she’d asked, he chuckled. “Not now.”
“Guess you’ve been gone awhile,” she said, “watching paint dry.”
He flinched with regret. “I’m sorry. I didn’t think you could hear. But even if you couldn’t, I shouldn’t have said...”
“What you were thinking?” she asked.
He sighed. “It’s hard right now—the rest of my team is on a huge assignment in River City.”
“And you’re here with me.”
But at the moment there was no place he’d rather be—no one he’d rather be with, and not just because she was still in danger. She was getting to him in a way no one else ever had.
“There,” she said as she held out his phone to him. “There’s the app.”
He scrolled through the list of some of the men who’d contacted her. They were certainly idiots—since none of them had snapped her up—but nobody stood out as a threat.
He used his phone to forward the information to the detective, so he could check them out, find out if any of them were rich enough to hire a killer.
Then he turned back to her and the temptation he’d resisted earlier rushed over him again. She was so damn beautiful that he wasn’t strong enough to fight the attraction this time. He leaned down and brushed his mouth over hers.
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